Girl kidnapped 6 years ago found after being featured on 'Unsolved Mysteries'
Kayla Unbehaun was allegedly kidnapped by her mother, Heather Uhbenhaun, on July 5, 2017, after they went on a camping trip in Illinois
May 17, 2023 8:56am
Updated: May 17, 2023 8:57am
An Illinois girl that was kidnapped six years ago was found on Saturday in North Carolina after someone recognized her from a Netflix episode of “Unsolved Mysteries.”
Kayla Unbehaun was allegedly kidnapped by her mother, Heather Uhbenhaun, on July 5, 2017, after they went on a camping trip in Illinois.
Kayla’s father, Ryan Iserka, who had won custody rights over Kayla earlier that year, was supposed to pick his daughter up after their trip to Ubenhaun’s home in Wheaton. However, the two were nowhere to be found, according to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NEMEC).
Unbenhaun and Kayla were last seen packing their belongings into the car, most likely not planning to come back to the house. A felony warrant was issued for Unbehaun for kidnapping by the local State Attorney’s office in July 2017.
On Saturday, a person recognized Kayla at a store in North Carolina after her story had been featured on an episode of “Unsolved Mysteries” on Netflix, a 2022 series about parental abductions, according to the Ashville Police Department. The individual notified a store employee, who called the police.
After Kayla was found, Unbehaun, 40, was arrested and charged with child abduction. She is being held on a $250,000 secured bond and is expected to be extradited to Illinois. She was given a July 11 court date.
Kayla, now 15 years old, was reunited with her father, who is “overjoyed” that his daughter is safe, according to a statement released by NEMEC.
“I also want to thank all of the followers on the ‘Bring Kayla Home’ Facebook page, who helped keep her story alive and were instrumental in spreading awareness,” he said. “We ask for privacy as we get to know each other again and navigate this new beginning.”